I’d like to share a story to ring in the new year. This story will have several lessons in it, and will also illustrate a few key principles. We’ll call it a modern-day health parable.

Last Saturday, just as I was bragging about my recent blood work and stellar chem panel, I started to notice a wee bit of tooth ache. Yes, wee bit; that would be the last time I’d remember life as I once knew it.

By Sunday, my tooth really started to ache, and by New Year’s Eve–forget about it–I was dying. This little conundrum I found myself in illustrates a few very important principles. First, the minute you get too elated about anything, expect something to come along and balance it out. Bragging about my health was sure to lead to a pedestal collapse. As it turns out, I cracked my tooth. Ouch! And it got infected. Double ouch!

The second principle, and one which I discuss in depth in my upcoming book, The Six Keys to Optimal Health, is that there is no such thing as perfect health. We actually cycle between health and illness all the time. That’s normal and, in fact, it is healthy. This does not make it futile to focus on health–no indeed–but to become attached to the concept of constant health is both futile and foolish. I’ll let you read about it further in my book (it’s coming, I swear!)

So, as I said, by New Year’s Eve the pain was pretty excruciating. No dentist to be found, so I had to rely on over-the-counter Motrin. All I can say is thank God for modern medicine.

But wait Campos, you’re always dissing medicine.

No, I’m not. In fact my message is, and always has been, that medicine is very valuable in times of crisis; and I was in the most pulsating, hammer and chisel to the head crisis I’ve ever been in. So I say once again–THANK GOD FOR MODERN MEDICINE!

Saw a dentist on Wednesday night and found out then about the cracked tooth and infection. I also found out that I’d need a root canal, and maybe even an extraction. Wah! Whatever, Doc. Pull it; do something, anything…please! He set me up for the root canal on Friday and gave me some better drugs. Have I said this yet: Thank God for modern pharmaceuticals, too. Man, they were the only things that got me through this mess. You guys know, some of you saw me, because I went to work anyway. I was a pathetic sight, that’s for sure.

Anyway, I had the root canal and the pain didn’t just go away. No problem, I expected that, because I know that the healing process takes time, so I certainly didn’t expect an overnight miracle. The bottom line is this: Pain medication is sometimes necessary; it can help you get over a very difficult hump. But when one looks to medicine as the answer, they are playing with fire. Use the meds while you work on fixing the problem, then wean off of them.

I’m weaning now. I’ve cut the dosage in half, and by mid-week, I anticipate I’ll be drug free. Cool. And the moral of the story is this: When you want to puff-up your plumage and show-off to the world, make sure you don’t bite down too hard on anything you eat, otherwise, you might just spend the next two weeks feasting on humble pie.

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